Avoid the “Summer Slide” – Do These Things to Keep Your Kids Reading (and Enjoying it!)

As summer is among us, your children most likely brought home summer reading lists.

Libraries in your area probably have programs to keep your children reading during the next couple of months. The idea is to not let children lose their love of reading or their ability to do it well just because the school year is over. My suggestion? Make it fun. Don’t make it a chore.

There are 12 story-poems in Reading Is Fun! Imagine That! If you read one per week and do the activity from each one, that would do just the trick – keeping reading fun and interesting this summer. Just one book and you have a good start for your summer reading!

I’m a bit old school, from an era where we got books from libraries to read. We didn’t have computers, so Googling the “best reads” or participating in any kind of reading-related activity online was not an option for me. I did a little research,and came up with my favorite ways for you to prevent the “summer slide.”

  • Simply Google “summer reading” and you’ll be amazed with what shows up! One of my favorites was a contest that Scholastic is putting on called the “Read-A-Palooza” Summer Reading Challenge, in which kids read and log their minutes as part of the challenge. It’s a free challenge where kids can earn digital rewards and have access to fun videos and book excerpts. The best part: the more they read, the more Scholastic will donate to kids in need of books!
  • Nowadays, you can buy books online and even have books transferred from one library to another. The Internet is packed with online resources of the best of the best summer reading lists. I encourage you to check them out and get them on your shelves before the last day of school!
  • Start a neighborhood book club with your child’s friends! I absolutely love this idea, because not only are children reading on their own, they’re coming together with other children to discuss what they’ve read. This creates a social environment revolving around reading – and what’s more fun than that?!
  • Have them read ANYTHING. It doesn’t have to be just books. It can be fun articles from a kid’s magazine, online articles made for kids, grocery list items (that they can then help you shop for and cook with), puzzle books, word scrabbles, etc.
  • Place books everywhere! In your car (so maybe they’re tempted to read them rather than pull out the electronics), on the coffee table, in the bathroom, on their bedroom desks, etc. If books are in sight, they’ll be more likely to pick them up!

The list of keeping summer reading alive is endless. I hope you’ll incorporate Reading Is Fun! Imagine That! into that reading. It’s packed full of story-poems with accompanying art and ideas for creating crafts – something you can do with your children while keeping their minds active all summer long!

Happy Reading!

Ruth A. Radmore



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